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  • Writer's pictureBishop Mesrop Parsamyan

Is Love Really Blind?

Is Love Really Blind iLooys

Is love really blind? The events of Easter morning, as described in John 20:1-9 (see below), suggest the opposite. On Easter morning, the eyes of the Apostle of Love open to such a light that leads him to faith.

The verb "to see" receives major importance in the last chapters of the Gospel of John. In the story of the Resurrection of our Lord, Mary Magdalene saw the stone removed from the tomb; the first disciple saw the linen cloths lying flat; Peter saw the shroud rolled up in its place. Then the disciple whom Jesus loved saw and believed.

The "see" of Mary Magdalene and the disciples is just a finding. It easily identifies the object of their gaze: a stone, cloths and a shroud. While the "seeing" of the disciple whom Jesus loved is of a different nature: it is not an objective finding, but it leads to the faith. In other words, we do not know what he saw, because the tomb was empty, or what he thought since the text does not say anything. Yet the Gospel depicts his eyes and his faith as the good news of this Easter morning.

The one who sees and believes is identified by the narrative as "the disciple whom Jesus loved." Were there any disciples whom Jesus didn’t like? Obviously not. Here it is not a selection or preference by Jesus, but rather an insistence that being a disciple and being loved is the same reality. The evangelist John, which tradition identifies with the beloved disciple of Jesus, shares with us his testimony: only the love of God highlights the earthly journey of Jesus Christ from the Christmas manger to the empty tomb of Easter. Only that love allows the disciples to understand the path of Jesus to his resurrection from the dead.

Thus, we see that the eyes of the disciple whom Jesus loved--indeed, the eyes of every disciple--are lit by love. It is the love of Jesus, which opens the eyes to his living presence. Love makes us see the presence of the beloved one, even when it is invisible to our human condition. Here is the faith, which is also the response of love to the Love.

That is the great lesson, the beautiful promise, which unfolds before us during Holy Week. It is the truth we should hold in our hearts this Easter Sunday, as we go forth into the world, fulfilling the angel’s command with our joyous greeting:

Krisdos haryav ee merelotz! - Orhnyal eh harootiunun Krisdosee!

Christ is risen from the dead! - Blessed is the resurrection of Christ!

John 20:1-9

“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went toward the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed”.

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